Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 pictures and hands-on

Lighter than a super model's lunchbox and faster than a kid full of Sherbet Dib Dabs, the Galaxy Tab 7.7 is Samsung's second foray into the market with a 7-inch tablet device, and this time it seems as if it's bang on the money.

Last year was perhaps too soon to try to buck the screen size trend set by Apple with the original iPad; 7 inches in display real estate just seemed puny in comparison, while the first Galaxy Tab also had a waistline that was almost as wide as it was long. In short, short was a mistake.

This time however, from our 15 minutes or so play during the press day at the IFA consumer electronics convention, lessons have not just been learned, they've been implemented.

With this year's diminutive model, we've seen Farley's Rusks that are thicker and heavier. At 333g for the Wi-Fi version (335g for the 3G) you barely notice that you're holding it. Last year, Samsung was touting the Tab as a handbag device, this year it is better placed to fulfil that promise.

Indeed, it's almost like swiping away and interacting with a magician's comedy playing card.

That's not to say that it's shy on tech in its bowels. The 1.4GHz processor keeps things whipping along nicely. In some respects, we'd even say that it is faster than the Galaxy Tab 10.1, but we weren't able to directly compare as we didn't have one to hand at the show.

There's also a 3-megapixel rear-facing camera with an LED flash, and a 2-megapixel front-facing webcam for video conferencing.

Having only a brief play, there's no way to guarantee battery life, but as it's of the 5,100mAh variety, we'd expect there to be plenty of juice for lengthy playtime.

Naturally, software-wise, as the device utilises Android 3.2 (Honeycomb), it works exactly like its bigger sibling, and the model displayed at IFA offered up few surprises for those familiar with the Google operating system. The only major change was the use of the smaller screen - instead of just making the homescreen widgets smaller, and therefore harder to read, they take up more space than their 10.1 equivalents. Funnily enough, this makes it look busier and more packed with features, so that's no bad thing.

The last thing of note (until we review the device) is that although the design, with its gorgeous brushed metal back and wafer thin girth, is as good as it gets, the final product could end up being different - something noted on the rear of the display sample.

Not that Samsung would like it to change, of course. It just may not have a choice, if Apple gets its wicked way.

It is also for this reason that we still have no confirmation on price or release date. But don't think we don't see the irony in going hands-on with the tablet in the very country that its stablemates are injuncted.

This story was posted on the fly at IFA using a Vodafone Mi-Fi hotspot. Catch up with the Pocket-lint team's reports from the show on our dedicated IFA 2011 microsite.